The Senate Budget Committee has approved a controversial GOP Tax Overhaul Bill with a party-line vote of 12-11, despite two key Republicans originally disputing its contents. The successful vote moves the GTO Bill one step closer to the Senate floor. The GTO Bill caused a firestorm of debate between Democrats and Republicans when first released several weeks ago, with Democrats claiming the bill pandered to the rich and Republicans asserting that it would significantly reduce taxes for families with young children. If the bill passes, it will have significant and long-lasting impacts on almost every American, regardless of income level, socioeconomic standing, or location.
Key Facts in GOP Tax Bill Progress
- Despite widespread support among the GOP, Ron Johnson (Wis.) and Bob Corker (Tenn.) both had issues with the bill and were poised to vote “no” until the very last minute. Both individuals voted in favor of the bill during the vote.
- Corker later stated that his changed outlook relied on a written agreement between him and the Senate Finance Committee. The document outlines exactly what will happen if, for some reason, the bill fails to spur on economic growth.
- The GTO Bill also includes a new measure that opens the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to the possibility of oil drilling – a contentious project that environmentalists claim will significantly harm local flora and fauna.
- Outside the Senate Budget Committee meeting, protesters attempted to stifle the bill. Loud chants and shouts of “stop the tax scam” and “kill the bill” echoed through the building. The loud naysayers were eventually removed.
- If the Senate approves the Bill, it will likely be passed with significant provisions, including tax increases for specific taxes if lower rates would increase the deficit. Assuming the bill is approved, it will face a full vote on Friday.
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